Paisley Park and Thyme Hill set for decider in Paddy Power Stayers’ Hurdle

Paisley Park and Aidan Coleman win the 2019 Stayers’ Hurdle. (Pic: Courtesy of Cheltenham Racecourse).

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PAISLEY Park and Thyme Hill are set for a decider in the Paddy Power Stayers’ Hurdle which has attracted 51 entries for the three-mile contest at Cheltenham on March 18.

Paisley Park won the long-distance hurdlers’ crown in 2019 for trainer Emma Lavelle and jockey Aidan Coleman and heads the betting at 3-1 with the sponsors from the Philip Hobbs-trained Thyme Hill at 7-2.

Paisley Park and Thyme Hill have met twice this term with the score currently standing at once apiece after finishing first and second at Newbury on November 27 and Ascot on December 19.

At Newbury Thyme Hill won the Grade 2 Long Distance Hurdle by a length and a half from Paisley Park after the winner tracked the leaders for the bulk of the three-mile contest, led approaching the last and kept on strongly in the run-in from the staying-on Paisley Park.

The placings were reversed at Ascot in the Grade 1 Long Walk Hurdle over an extended three miles where Paisley Park prevailed in a thrilling contest, heading Thyme Hill in the final strides after racing towards the rear initially, improving in the middle stages and keeping on strongly in the run-in to get his head in front just before the finishing line.

Paisley Park now appears likely to target a third consecutive win in the Cleeve Hurdle at Cheltenham on January 30 enroute to the Stayers’ Hurdle.

Paddy Power himself said: “The staying hurdling division has arguably the greatest rivalry in jumps racing at present between former champ Paisley Park and young pretender Thyme Hill.

“It’s one all so far this season and while there’s a possibility they could lock horns again in the Cleeve Hurdle, Philip Hobbs has indicated the latter will probably go straight for the Paddy Power Stayers’ Hurdle when the argument can be settled once and for all.”

Paddy Power Stayers’ Hurdle betting (sponsor’s odds): 3/1 Paisley Park; 7/2 Thyme Hill; 5/1 Champ; 7/1 Benie Des Dieux; 10/1 Sire du Berlais; 12/1 Fury Road, McFabulous; 14/1 Flooring Porter, Roksana; 16/1 If The Cap Fits, Next Destination, Pauls Saga, Ronald Pump; 20/1 Great White Shark, The Storyteller, Thomas Darby, Vinndication; 25/1 Beacon Edge, City Island, Dame De Compagnie, Emitom, Kemboy, Lisnagar Oscar, Summerville Boy; 33/1 Diol Ker, French Dynamite, Honest Vic, Itchy Feet, Kalashnikov, Main Fact, Sixshooter; 40/1 Bachasson, Bapaume, Commander Of Fleet, Lil Rockerfeller, Sam Spinner; 50/1 Bacardys, Call Me Lord, Reserve Tank; 66/1 Décor Irlandais, Imperial Alcazar, Sams Profile, The Mighty Don, Tobefair, Vision Des Flos, Younevercall; 100/1 Ask Dillon, Captain Zebo, Donnas Diamond, Heaven Help Us, Jacamar

Cheltenham March 18, 2021

Ask Dillon (IRE) 8 11 10 4 The Fun Partnership Fergal O’Brien

Bacardys (FR) 10 11 10 Shanakiel Racing Syndicate W. P. Mullins IRE

Bachasson (FR) 10 11 10 E. O’Connell W. P. Mullins IRE

Bapaume (FR) 8 11 10 Mrs S. Ricci W. P. Mullins IRE

Beacon Edge (IRE) 7 11 10 Gigginstown House Stud Noel Meade IRE

Call Me Lord (FR) 8 11 10 Mr Simon Munir & Mr Isaac Souede Nicky Henderson

Captain Zebo (IRE) 9 11 10 Mrs S. F. Dixon John Dixon

Champ (IRE) 9 11 10 Mr John P. McManus Nicky Henderson

City Island (IRE) 8 11 10 Sean & Bernardine Mulryan Martin Brassil IRE

Commander of Fleet (IRE) 7 11 10 Gigginstown House Stud Gordon Elliott IRE

Decor Irlandais (FR) 8 11 10 Mr John Devine Noel C. Kelly IRE

Diol Ker (FR) 7 11 10 Gigginstown House Stud Noel Meade IRE

Donna’s Diamond (IRE) 12 11 10 D&D Armstrong Ltd Chris Grant

Emitom (IRE) 7 11 10 The Spero Partnership Ltd Warren Greatrex

Flooring Porter (IRE) 6 11 10 Flooring Porter Syndicate Gavin Cromwell IRE

French Dynamite (FR) 6 11 10 Robcour M. F. Morris IRE

Fury Road (IRE) 7 11 10 Gigginstown House Stud Gordon Elliott IRE

Honest Vic (IRE) 8 11 10 Carole Daly & Partners Henry Daly

If The Cap Fits (IRE) 9 11 10 Mr Simon Munir & Mr Isaac Souede Harry Fry

Imperial Alcazar (IRE) 7 11 10 Imperial Racing Partnership 2016 Fergal O’Brien

Itchy Feet (FR) 7 11 10 Kate & Andrew Brooks Olly Murphy

Jacamar (GER) 6 11 10 Pegasus Bloodstock Limited Milton Harris

Kalashnikov (IRE) 8 11 10 Mr Paul Murphy Amy Murphy

Kemboy (FR) 9 11 10 Kemboy/Brett Graham/Ken Sharp Syndicate W. P. Mullins IRE

Lil Rockerfeller (USA) 10 11 10 Davies Smith Govier & Brown Neil King

Lisnagar Oscar (IRE) 8 11 10 Racing for Fun Rebecca Curtis

Main Fact (USA) 8 11 10 Munrowd’s Partnership David Pipe

McFabulous (IRE) 7 11 10 Giraffa Racing Paul Nicholls

Next Destination (IRE) 9 11 10 Mr Malcolm C. Denmark Paul Nicholls

Paisley Park (IRE) 9 11 10 Mr Andrew Gemmell Emma Lavelle

Reserve Tank (IRE) 7 11 10 The Reserve Tankers Colin Tizzard

Ronald Pump (GB) 8 11 10 Laois Limerick Syndicate Matthew J. Smith IRE

Sam Spinner (GB) 9 11 10 Caron & Paul Chapman Jedd O’Keeffe

Sams Profile (GB) 7 11 10 Michael O’Flynn/John F O’Flynn M. F. Morris IRE

Sire du Berlais (FR) 9 11 10 Mr John P. McManus Gordon Elliott IRE

Sixshooter (IRE) 6 11 10 Gigginstown House Stud Noel Meade IRE

Summerville Boy (IRE) 9 11 10 Mr R. S. Brookhouse Tom George

The Mighty Don (IRE) 9 11 10 Golden Rose Partnership Nick Gifford

The Storyteller (IRE) 10 11 10 Mrs Pat Sloan Gordon Elliott IRE

Thomas Darby (IRE) 8 11 10 Mrs Diana L. Whateley Olly Murphy

Thyme Hill (GB) 7 11 10 The Englands and Heywoods Philip Hobbs

Tobefair (GB) 11 11 10 Down The Quay Club Debra Hamer

Vinndication (IRE) 8 11 10 Moremoneythan Kim Bailey

Vision des Flos (FR) 8 11 10 Ann & Alan Potts Limited Colin Tizzard

Younevercall (IRE) 10 11 10 Youneverknow Partnership Kim Bailey

Benie des Dieux (FR) 10 11 3 Mrs S. Ricci W. P. Mullins IRE

Dame de Compagnie (FR) 8 11 3 Mr John P. McManus Nicky Henderson

Great White Shark (FR) 7 11 3 Mr Malcolm C. Denmark W. P. Mullins IRE

Heaven Help Us (IRE) 7 11 3 Mr J. Turner P. Hennessy IRE

Paul’s Saga (FR) 7 11 3 Gerald Laroche D. Cottin FR

Roksana (IRE) 9 11 3 Mrs Sarah Faulks Dan Skelton

*There is a scratchings deadline for the Paddy Power Stayers’ Hurdle on February 9, with the six-day confirmation stage and supplementary entry stage following on March 12.

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